LETTERS  PCR #183      (September 22--28, 2003)

Terence's final word
Matt Rails back
Mack responds to Terence
Andy Lalino strikes back
Phil F. rebukes Nolan's UFO theory

Letters to the EditorWe welcome your feedback.

Well, Well.

Isn't it funny how riled up some poeple can get simply because I corrected some dates on their album picks. Yes Mack, I'm talking to you. (See "Mack Beasley corrects Terence back"---N.) It's also funny how the letter wasn't even aimed at you, yet you took offense at my album picks which were supposed to be my favorites for my own reasons. I don't believe I ever said that they were the best. If I had, then Dylan would have taken up the majority of the list.

As for The Beatles not ripping from Pink Floyd, let's be realistic here. Who really believes that the Beatles didn't frequent underground clubs and take what was unpopular at the time and make it commercial? They did do that, it's a fact, sparky! Now as to whether The Beatles or Floyd did Psychedelia better is open to personal opinion. As for the defense that Dark Side and not Piper went platinum, I ask you, since when does that matter?! Since when did mass appeal make something better? Usually the masses like it because it's dumbed down. The best example is how Nirvana in the '90s completely ripped licks from the Pixies and Mudhoney (infintely better bands) and went on to superstardom. Yet anyone with a good background in music know that's sellout crap!

As for me being simply a "fact geek", you are sadly mistaken. When I was in high school, the music I grew up on was blues from the '20s and '30s. I never listened to modern music until '97. After the blues I went to Buddy Holly and the '50s, then the Doors and the '60s. True, I didn't grow up in the times, but I discovered music of the '60s in almost the same wide-eyed wonder that so many did back then. And frankly if a Love album can still sound undated in 2003, then I'm sorry, that's saying something. Can you really say that about "Octopus's Garden"?

To be fair I think The White Album is the best work The Beatles ever did and one of the best of the '60s, but again, not my favorite as this was a favorites list. And for calling someone a fact geek you certainly name-drop like it's no tomorrow. Yes, don't worry Mack, I now think you know as much or more than me---you sleep tight now. To say that The Beatles invented every sound of the '60s is ridiculous (you did say The Beatles were the 60's), we all know Jimi Hendrix, Pink Floyd, and Love were all in bands around the same time and to say that they only progressed musically by waiting to see what the Beatles were doing is preposterous. Bands like the MC5 and The Stooges were raised on Chuck Berry and Eddie Cochran as much as Lennon was. So to say they got it from The Beatles is a dumb comment. Personally the reason why I don't find as much to like in the Beatles is because it was basically made for the public at large. It didn't have long guitar solos and it usually didn't exceed 5 mins. They were defintely revolutionary in the studio, but as for lyrics, I think Dylan said it best to Lennon ( "You guys have nothing to say..."). Now don't get me wrong, I love Lennon by himself. The Plastic Ono Band and Imagine are two of the best albums I have ever heard and they are dear to me.

Finally, no the '60s did not begin in 1967, nor did I say it did, but to me, albums didn't start until 1965 with Highway 61 Revisted by Bob Dylan---until that point, albums were simply a collection of songs and not a cohesive whole. There...if you still disagree with me I can't help you. But to say that I'm personally picking wierd stuff for my favorite list is an insult. The other writers of the PCR know better. You don't know me so please don't try to act like you do by playing amateur psychiatrist.

Now Lalino your turn. (Re: "Andy Lalino strikes back!"---N) I never said that hating the 1982 Cat People was a fact, I was simply shocked that you, a professed horror fan, would like what I find to be a disaster. And using Nastassja Kinski and the word "eroticism" more than once proves you only like it 'cuz it gives you a hard-on.

<< As far as Bava's "Lisa and the Devil", I do own one of its many incarnations on VHS (called "Devil in the House of Exorcism"). Yes, I agree that Bava is a great horror filmmaker, but when I see a scene of a possessed woman on a bed throwing green pea soup up on a man, I can only conclude that the film (I'm being gracious here) was "inspired by" Friedkin's "The Exorcist", of which there were many imitators. >>

Yeah, but again Lalino, like I stated which you chose to ignore, you saw a butchered American version with tacked-on refilmed exorcism scenes. What did you not understand about what I said?

<< Now onto "Ganja & Hess" AKA ("Double Possession"). Note the alternate title, Terence. No, I have not seen G&H, but one does not need to see a particular film to include it in a commentary. Perhaps it wasn't about possession, remember I haven't seen the film, but the ads/alternate title would lead one to believe otherwise. >>

Again Lalino, you never said that you saw "just a trailer", so you are bad-mouthing a film which many readers may not discover based on a trailer you saw! That's wrong.

Yes, you have a right to name-drop films as long as you get them right and don't do wrong by them like you have been. And calling the movie The Beyond is not "renaming" it, it's the goddamn original title for christsake!!! And no, I did not name Demon Witch Child, because it's pure crap! Its also known over here as The Possessed. But it's director, Amando De Ossorio, has had better days (check out Tombs Of The Blind Dead) and was simply cashing in on The Exorcist unlike Bava's masterpeice Lisa and The Devil. Finally, if you knew the film as House Of Exorcism then why did you call it Lisa and the Devil? If, according to you, you don't "rename" movies, then why didn't you call it House Of Exorcism?!!!!

I try oh-so-hard to spotlight these classics and then when someone comes along and screws it up it pisses me off. So if you are going to name-drop and do it wrong and make wrong comments, then yes, I'm going to correct you for any readers who may be misled....sorry.

And now Lalino, I'm done with you.

To Hell with you all,
Terence Nuzum


I don't know what I found more suprising, that someone (Andy) could reply to Terence's scathing review with such dignity (See "Andy Lalino strikes back"---N), or that someone else (Mack) could supply that which he himself deems offensive (See "Mack Beasley corrects Terence back"---N).

First to Andy: while I personally don't think Natasha's Cat People can compete with the original effort, I did find it enjoyable. Not suprisingly for many of the reasons you state. Since we're talking about personal likes here, I don't know why Terence would slice and dice as he did. But that said....it "is" Terence we're talking about...he of the "to hell with you all" credo, and I think we all can expect nafarious promotion at one time or another. It's really kind of an achievement, in a morbid sort of way. Oh...and I see you also like "Days of Future Past", which I included in last week's Top 10. Perhaps you have allowed yourself to be blessed with the "seventh sojourn" experience!?! Also, I'd be interested in knowing how you think that compares with "Every Good Boy Deserves Favour".

Now to Mack: Dude, how can you blast Terence for blasting Andy about Andy's opinion, and them be so uninvolved in your own point to do the exact same thing to Terence? Piper at the Gates of Dawn is one of his personal favorites. The fact you think it sucks is irrelevent to the matter. Although I don't know for sure, it sounds like you and Andy are best friends...or you just don't care too much for Terence. either is fine, of course. I guess "T" did give you "some" grief. As for Terence saying the Beatles ripped off Pink Floyd, you must have received a separate email from Terence none of us are privy to. He said simply that the two bands recording [in studios] next to each other "makes you wonder" if maybe The Beatles' Sgt. Peppers album was influenced by Floyd. Given that the Beatles themselves freely admitted to writing songs influenced by others gives credence to the possibility, however unlikely anyone may think it is. Also, Syd Barrett was nuts way before '68. That's just when it started to hit critical mass. I won't insult you for you're not caring for Barrett, as it's your opinion, but I am going to check out "Piper", as Terence is usually good for a few gems I missed out on. Naturally, I'll let everyone know what I think.

Matt [Drinnenberg]


Is it possible? Can there really be someone that freakin' dim? (Re: "Terence Corrects Everybody", PCR Lettercol #181 and "Top Ten Albums of the '60s", frontpage, same issue.---Nolan) This has little to do with personal taste and more to do with the crock of *%#$@ factor! I was going on memory not research as to the Three Dog Night and Steppenwolf albums. I feel having lived thru the late 60's and 70's very fortunate to have a memory at all.

Some goober (Terence Nuzum) is claiming the Beatles ripped off Pink Floyd! Why would they, Floyd at that time was crap. And as for Piper being their best album, "Ha Ha Charade You Are", did it go tripple platinum, like say,...Dark Side of the Moon in 1973? Besides, Syd Barrett was nuts by 1968, we should have faced facts and pulled the plug on him sooner. I'm surprised TN didn't bring up the original Fleetwood Mac group as they were also lame at first. As for the Stones "Just a Shot Away" comments, let me offer "Happiness is a Warm Gun", "Piggies" and "Taxman"....Oh yeah, the MC5, one tune, that's it, one freakin' tune "Kick out the Jams" and if it wasn't for that opening cry...nothing would have ever been heard of them. Unless you factor in the Chicago 7 incident with John Sinclair (one of the band members). King Crimson? Until EL&P came along nobody had any interest in them or The Nice, that's why they broke up.

Seems obvious TN likes to draw attention to himself by making controversial statements. Another obscure fact geek, so busy with insignificant details he can't see the big picture. His apparent disdain of The Beatles is a case in point, the '60s were The Beatles. Without them there is no MC5, Jimi Hendrix or Mick Jagger. The late '60s were about protesting the war and doing drugs and free love, read The Beatles' lyrics. By 1969, it was all over. The Beatles were gone and so was the decade, so how can anybody wanting to discuss the '60s condemn anything about the Fab Four without exposing himself. He damn sure doesn't know anything about the period-- first off, the '60s didn't start in 1967. His final #1 selection, "Forever Changes". He actually thinks that rates in the top 500 list. Donny Osmond had more to offer musically. Someone stop this man before he writes again !

Maybe as TN is in his early 20s he should focus on a more recent decade, say the 1990s, I will assume he was there, (more or less). He can be way ahead of the game and discuss how Vanilla Ice was under-appreciated and how Moby should be the next social compass and how rapper fifty cent is over priced, Blah, blah, blah.

Mack [Beasley]


Once again a big apology for not contributing to my weekly musings in PCR issue #181. I'm making up for that now (and, no, Terence has not been scaring me off...).

Top 10 Albums of the 1960s
Risking the wrath of PCR's regular columnists, I have to admit I'm not the biggest fan of '60s music. In the mid-to-late '70s and up until '82 I was the quintessential album rocker (kind of), preferring Prog Rock to Disco (I was a big fan of The Moody Blues & Yes - it was my Dungeons & Dragons background music). 1983 was when MTV began attracting my attention (and taking over my life), transforming me from album rocker to New Waver. As a result, I never looked back (much), preferring Real Life, Re-Flex, and Simple Minds to the late '60s/'70s Prog Rockers. Once in a while I'll spin "Tales from Topographic Oceans" or "Days of Future Passed", but I'm much more likely to play Japan's "Exorcising Ghosts" or China Crisis' "Flaunt the Imperfection".

I suppose the '60s are a little too "hippie-ish" for me, as far as music goes. I dig the clean-shaven Euro-look of the British/European/U.S. bands of the '80s (Pet Shop Boys, Kraftwerk). I do dig hippies in movies, however. For example when Artie Johnson played that great hippie DJ stuck in that ghostly western town in an episode of "Night Gallery"! Oh, I do love The Doors. They're probably the best of the '60s bands. How brilliant that The Cult's Ian Astbury joined forces with the surviving Doors for a current tour of their music. Saw a video with them on VH-1 Classic - Astbury was incredible (looked cool too).

I'm sure Terence will have a take on my opinion of '60s music. Oh, I forgot to mention I like the band Spirit too...

Terence on Andy
May I remind you, Terence, that your opinion of Paul Schrader's version of "Cat People" is exactly that - your opinion. (Re: "Terence Corrects Everybody", PCR Lettercol #181.---Nolan) It is my opinion that it is indeed one of the best horror films of the 1980's and well deserving of a re-assessment. Consider the elements that support it being considered a great film:
1. Nastassja Kinski
2. Malcolm McDowell's incredible performance as Irena's brother Paul
3. The film's incredible eroticism
4. Nastassja Kinski
5. Giorgio Moroder's classic score
6. David Bowie's single "Putting Out Fire" (Cat People)
7. Great cinematography
8. Wonderful ensemble performances (John Heard, Annette O' Toole, Ed Begley Jr., Ruby Dee)
9. New Orleans locale
10. Nastassja Kinski
11. Great dream sequences
12. Excellent special make-up effects (Tom Burman's studio), which included a genuinely scary autopsy scene
13. Nastassja Kinski

So there! My support of the '82 "Cat People" in no way detracts from Val Lewton's original (which I saw after the '82 version). In fact, I think it's one of the few horror films genuinely worthy of a "remake" (in the '40s, Val Lewton could not have attained the level of eroticism that Schrader did). Sorry if Alan Ormsby didn't like it (when do writers ever like the way their story is told in movies?). I have a lot of respect for him (CSPWDT is a classic), but the reality is he should try to direct his own version if he's unhappy with Schrader's vision.

As far as Bava's "Lisa and the Devil", I do own one of its many incarnations on VHS (called "Devil in the House of Exorcism"). Yes, I agree that Bava is a great horror filmmaker, but when I see a scene of a possessed woman on a bed throwing green pea soup up on a man, I can only conclude that the film (I'm being gracious here) was "inspired by" Friedkin's "The Exorcist", of which there were many imitators. To be fair, I have not seen the original cut, referred to by fans as "Lisa and the Devil". Now onto "Ganja & Hess" AKA ("Double Possession"). Note the alternate title, Terence. No, I have not seen G&H, but one does not need to see a particular film to include it in a commentary. Perhaps it wasn't about possession, remember I haven't seen the film, but the ads/alternate title would lead one to believe otherwise. It's kind of like TV syndicates disguising Italian giallos as horror movies on Channel 44's "Creature Features". Exploitation film history is full of misleading ad campaigns. Like Nolan (who's my elder - ha, ha), I have been a Fanboy since the early '70s (I'm 36), I have done my homework, and I have every right as a horror nut (who knows his exploitation films, mind you) to bring up any cult movie I choose. I can't bat 1,000 all the time, and I suggest you buy & watch "Demon Witch Child" (notice you didn't comment on that film).

As far as Fulci's "7 Doors of Death" is concerned, I saw the film at the theaters back in '84 (I consider myself very fortunate). I don't like the practice of renaming movies, even if the original title was "The Beyond". It's confusing to the fan and the consumer, besides "7 Doors of Death" is a more colorful title. Being that I did see it upon its release and enjoyed it immensely, it will always be "7 Doors of Death" to me (I even have the original movie poster hanging up in my den). BTW, I own the deluxe boxed set (packaged in a metal tin) of "The Beyond" and have obviously seen both cuts. I do prefer "The Beyond" version.

Okay, Terence, I'm done with you.

9/11 and Politics
As tempting as it is to discuss politics on your site, Nolan, I must resist. I prefer writing about cult films as opposed to politics. (Awww...give in once in a while!---N)

John Ritter, Johnny Cash & Sheb Wooley
What a shock about John Ritter, huh? I think Mike Smith mentioned his finest hour: 1979's "Hero at Large" - what a great movie! John Ritter was such a likeable actor - he was the last person one would expect to go so soon.

Johnny Cash was a country icon, but not being a fan of country I don't have much to write about. Loved his guest vocals on U2's "The Wanderer" off "Zooropa" - what a song!!

Nolan, if you remember the '70s as I do, you'll no doubt recall the classic Sheb Wooley commercials for his records, tapes & 8-tracks! They were similar to Boxcar Willie's and Slim Whitman's. I think Sheb appeared special on those commercials. He was best known for "The Purple People Eater" single, but I liked "Don't Go Near the Eskimos". He also wrote the theme to "Hee-Haw" (Dr. Paul Bearer even appeared on the show!). Sheb Wooley died last week.

TTFN - Looking forward to the next PCR!!!

- Andy Lalino


It is interesting to me that you note that Mr. Teller was a great scientist who worked on military secrets in the desert. (Re: "Edward Teller Dies at 95", PCR #181.---N)

You note some involvement of his with UFO-type systems that are allegedly discovered and researched. It has been shown MOST UFO sightings have occured around MILITARY bases. Personally, I believe these sightings are the products of the military's secret research and they use the UFO propaganda on simple-minded Americans to further their cause of national security. It surprises me how many fall prey to this, especially in light of the clear evidence against such nonsense. Most people think that Stealth technology is a radar-avoiding system. It is a cloaking device.

Strangely, it seems to even cloak common sense.

Phil F.

Phil, thanks so much for writing. Actually I agree with you, but my pointing out his "involvement" with UFO reverse-technology research at Area 51 was meant to touch on a pop culture aspect synonomous with his name in some circles and not meant to necessarily endorse same. ---Nolan

To send an email to Letters to the Editor write to: Crazedfanboy1@aol.com.  Any emails sent to this address will be assumed intended for publication unless you specifically instruct me not to. I can and do respond privately, if that is your preference. Frequently, it's both ways.---Nolan

Back to top

Closing this browser window will return you to the homepage